Bustling activism alive and well on campus

December 15, 2016

Activism has been a colossal part of Chico State for many years in the past. Both the community and university join together to express their opinion about issues regarding their passion.

Both Democrats and Republicans are represented by their own groups on campus. They each have been active in the community since 1990.

“Through my two and a half years at Chico I have channeled my passion for activism through many different organizations,” junior communication studies major Brina Covarrubias said.

Students focus on activism not only during and after elections, but throughout the entire year.

Covarrubias discussed that she was an employee of the Campus Alcohol and Drug Education Center, UMatter, Gender and Sexuality Equity Center, and Stop Trafficking of Persons. Being an advocate for awareness is important to her, especially because substance abuse is more common than people are aware of.

“I aim to spread more general knowledge and awareness about substance abuse so that people have a better understanding,” Covarrubias said.

The Gender Sexuality Equality Center is also a huge advocate for Chico State when it comes to activism. They have put on many events including Queer Week which help those in need to express their opinion about their views.

Stop Trafficking of Persons, another club on campus, aims to spread awareness about human trafficking.

“Many people are not aware that this exists. People even here in Chico are trafficked and the area surrounding Sacramento is the most trafficked area in the United States,” Covarrubias said.

After the recent election there have been even more activist events in the community. For example, there have been multiple protests and marches against the President-elect Donald Trump and the Dakota Access Pipeline.

“In my time at Chico State, I have participated in the LGBTQ rights march and the Not my President march,” Unique Torres, junior journalism major said.

Since the construction on the Dakota Access Pipeline, there have been a few protests in downtown Chico. There have also been multiple marches and protests regarding Donald Trump.

Matt Sutter, a resident of Chico has recently organized an upcoming march against Trump, coming up on Dec. 19.

“In a democratic society, if we don’t like what government is doing, we need to look in the mirror, because it’s our responsibility. If we sit on the sidelines, then we deserve the bad government we get,” Sutter said.

Chico is a community focused on making activism help those who want to express their opinion and has been doing this for many years.

“It means being willing to stick your neck out and be counted for what you feel is an important cause. It is the true nature of a democratic society,” Sutter said. We need to vote strategically. We need to call members of congress and hold them accountable. If we don’t like the politicians that are out there, we need to run for office ourselves.”

Kayla Fitzgerald can be reached at [email protected] or @kaylafitz_20 on Twitter.

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